PRESIDENT Michael D Higgins has told business leaders in Mexico that we have returned to "economic stability and to modest growth".
Mr Higgins yesterday became the first European head of state or government to speak at the Mexican Business Summit, where he said Ireland's future lay in turning our backs on "the failed economic path of reckless speculation and bubble economics".
The summit, now in its 11th year, was held in Guadalajara. At the event, Pele presented a soccer jersey to the Mexican President.
The influential summit is the biggest of its kind in the country of 112 million people, and the president presented Ireland as an attractive place in which to invest.
He told delegates that our small country needed a sustainable model of economics where talented people are nurtured and valuable goods are created.
Ireland, which had a 24pc growth in exports to Mexico last year, was described by Mr Higgins as having "enormous potential to Mexican companies as a gateway to the European market".
This year, he said, marked Ireland's sixth year of a "painful rebalancing" where we were "burdened with unemployment and debt levels".
Mr Higgins wished not to dwell on the mistakes of the past, reliving "that which has failed", but emphasised the importance of "embracing opportunity" versus "pursuing opportunism".
He also announced a business seminar that will take place in Dublin next May "specifically targeted at increasing Mexican investment in Dublin and Ireland".
Mr Higgins, who delivered his keynote speech in Spanish and English, focused heavily on the digital age.